Pen-F  Processing  Times


The HR mode on the Pen-F involves the camera automatically taking a sequence of eight pixel-shifted images, through precise movements of the sensor utilising the IBIS, and combining them into a single 80MP ORF file.  The camera also outputs a 50MP HR OOC JPG.  A detailed explanation of the Olympus HR system, together with an animation, is given on the DPR website here.

The HR system requires a static scene and use of s rigid tripod to prevent blurring and artifacts.  In HR mode the shutter speed is limited to 8 seconds maximum, the ISO setting is limited to 1600 ISO maximum, and the f number setting is limited to a maximum of f/8.

As the Pen-F in Standard mode (20MP) has a maximum continuous shooting rate of 10 frames per sec, that would suggest that the minimum capture time for the eight sequential 20MP images in HR mode would be 0.8 seconds.  This total time would thus be the minimum time required, regardless of how fast the shutter speed.  Obviously slow shutter speeds would mean that the total time would necessarily be longer than 0.8 seconds.

I conducted some tests with my Pen-F in HR mode to try to examine how the shutter speed would affect the total time.  Using a tripod I took HR shots with my Pen-F of the face of a clock with a continuous sweep second hand, over a range of shutter speeds.


Crops showing the second hand taken from each of the 14 test HR images can be found here.

The crop for the 0.05s shutter speed case is shown below (click on the image for the full size):

Crop from OOC HR JPG, 0.05s Shutter Speed

The image shows the eight distinct images of the second hand, captured over a total time of about 1 second.

The full results for all 14 images are shown in the table below:

The results showed that for shutter speeds up to about 1/100s, the total time to record the 8 images is about 0.8s.

At shutter speeds slower than that, a longer time than 0.8s is required.  This extra time is about 0.6 sec for shutter speeds up to about 1/10s.

The extra time becomes gradually less at slower shutter speeds than about 1/10s, being about 0.4 sec at a S/S of 0.4s, and being only about 0.2s at a S/S of 1.6s.

The results may indicate that there is a two-stage process involved, where the first set of 4 images may be undergoing processing while the capture of the second set of 4 is taking place.


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